Photo By William Martin - UNDER DISTRESS: Attacker Jessica Diaz avoids being swamped by defender as she looks for an open teammate to pass the bail to in practice Tuesday, Sept. 3 at  the LAC pool
Photo By William Martin / Viking – UNDER DISTRESS: Attacker Jessica Diaz avoids being swamped by defender as she looks for an open teammate to pass the bail to in practice Tuesday, Sept. 3 at the LAC pool

 

By Shannon Murphy / Staff Writer

LBCC’s women’s water polo team finished the season last year with 19-11 record, finishing in first place in the South Coast Conference and eleventh in the state. Coach and two-time Olympian Chris Oeding said “since taking over in 2000 my goal has been to maximize our potential. Our focus this season is to master our individual skill set so collectively we can be a stronger team.”

“[Water polo] is exciting to watch. It’s a very fast paced sport with lots of movement and lots of scoring.” Jessica Diaz, 20, an attacker and member of the All-South Coast Conference Second Team has been playing water polo for 15 years. “It’s a really unique sport that’s very physically challenging.” Ranya El-Tawil, 19, a defender, and also a Second Team member, has been playing water polo for nine years. “We’re small, but we’re mighty. We have a lot of individual skills.”
“[Water polo] is like a whole bunch of sports combined, football without the pads, wrestling without the ground plus ball work like basketball or soccer,” said El-Tawil.

The Viking’s have their first game on Friday Sept. 6 at Cypress College. More game dates and times are available at lbccvikings.com/sports/wwaterpolo.